Germany is due to increase onshore wind tender volumes from next year, but will need to solve its long-standing permitting issues to fully exploit this extra capacity, according to the country’s wind energy association.
Energy minister Peter Altmaier this week announced that the government has agreed to increase onshore wind tender volumes from 2.9GW a year to 4GW from 2022.
The government has also agreed to reallocate tender volumes not used up in 2021 and 2022 in the following year – rather than in the third year after the initial offering, he added.
Other changes announced by Altmaier include a reduction in the fee paid by consumers to support wind and solar operators from 2023.
The so-called EEG surcharge paid by consumers will be capped at €50/MWh in 2023 and 2024 – down from €65/MWh in 2021 and €60/MWh in 2022 – and eventually phased out, Altmaier said.
German wind energy association BWE welcomed the plans for increased tender volumes, but warned that federal states must act quickly to award project permits to developers, enabling them to compete at auction.
A lack of permitted projects able to qualify for tenders has routinely led to Germany's onshore wind power auctions being undersubscribed.
In October 2020, Altmaier convened a roundtable discussion on what to do with turbines exiting the country’s support system. The government then pledged to address repowering and permitting issues with legislation in the first quarter of 2021. However, it has yet to materialise.